West Bengal Primary Teacher Recruitment Scam: Calcutta High Court cancels jobs of 36,000 untrained teachers in primary education.
Calcutta High Court Cancels Jobs of 36,000 Untrained Teachers:
On Friday, May 6th, the Calcutta High Court delivered a major setback to the primary teacher recruitment process in West Bengal. The court canceled the jobs of 36,000 untrained teachers who had been included in the 2016 panel without any training. This decision was made by Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay, who heard multiple arguments in the case.
Investigation into the Primary Teacher Recruitment Scam:
This case was not new to the authorities, as it had been investigated before in 2014. At that time, evidence was gathered separately from the teachers who had passed the TET exam, revealing several issues with the recruitment process. Some teachers had not taken aptitude tests, and some were hired without following the preservation policy. Even though some candidates had completed training, they were still denied jobs, and untrained candidates were given jobs instead.
Cancellation of Jobs of Untrained Teachers:
In 2014, 42,000 primary teachers were recruited, and the jobs of 36,000 untrained candidates were cancelled. However, in 2016, 36,000 untrained teachers were hired again, causing a major setback to the education system. Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay canceled the jobs of these teachers, stating that the Primary Education Council must recruit new candidates within the next three months.
Opportunity to Prove Qualifications:
Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay directed that those whose jobs have been canceled still have the opportunity to prove their qualifications. The judge has stated that the canceled teachers will work for the next four months and receive a salary at the rate of assistant teachers. Their service will not be interrupted, but they must prove their qualifications to be considered for future employment.
Political Statements on the Issue:
The Trinamool Congress leader Kunal Ghosh stated that the matter is sub judice and everyone has been given a directive. He refused to make any political statement on the issue. On the other hand, CPIM leader Sujan Chakraborty welcomed the court’s decision. However, he also highlighted that the responsibility for the cancellation of the jobs of 36,000 people lies with the state government. If they do not provide employment through this route, these people will try to find jobs elsewhere.
The state government may need to take money from Manik Bhattacharya, the former chairman of the board, if it cannot afford to hire newly trained teachers based on their qualifications. This is because Manik Bhattacharya was the mastermind behind the recruitment process, which was marred by corruption since the 2014 TET. The state government may need to take strict measures to ensure that such corruption does not happen again, and only qualified candidates are hired in the future.
The cancellation of jobs for 36,000 untrained teachers is a major setback for the primary education system in West Bengal. However, it is also an opportunity to correct the mistakes made in the recruitment process and ensure that only qualified candidates are hired in the future. The state government and education authorities must take strict measures to prevent corruption and ensure that the education system is not compromised.